DALLAS - Mavericks forward Lamar Odom and guard Delonte West took a trip to the Dallas Zoo after practice Monday.
"This is my first time at the Dallas Zoo," Odom said. "What a great way to be here for the first time, and hold a penguin!"
Ever since he arrived in Dallas, he's been a lightning rod for controversy. Mavericks' fans are still trying figure him out.
Last Wednesday, he was booed on his home court.
"Well, I’ve never been booed in my life," Odom said after practice on Monday. "So if it's to the point where I'm playing a basketball game at home and I'm getting booed, then I would say, no disrespect, but I think people took things the wrong way."
He said at the time, the booing did not anger him.
"No, I would say [I was] confused," Odom said. "I wouldn't say 'angry,' because there are a lot of sides to Lamar Odom."
Odom played 13 minutes against the Houston Rockets on Saturday with no points and two rebounds. The night before against the San Antonio Spurs, he never left the bench. Against the Lakers, he had one point, one rebound and one assist.
The Mavericks are not happy with that kind of production.
"No, I don't think we are and I don't think he is," said Mavericks President of Basketball Operations Donnie Nelson. "It's like anything else, you go through personal situations, you go through a different system, and it takes some adjustment. So, we're there to support him through the good and the bad."
His coach also continued to support the troubled forward.
"He's just got to hang in there and keep playing," said head coach Rick Carlisle. "We're going to be behind him. We've got to have everyone stick with it. He's an important player for us."
Odom said he think fans misinterpreted Odom's comments in the media about the tough off season he went through.
"I admitted what I’ve been through," Odom said. "I was honest about how my summer went, how I almost left the game and everything I went through, and I think people just took it the wrong way. Like I had a reason not to be here if I didn't want to be here."
Odom says he'll regain his old form in due time. He says whatever "it" was that people think that he's lost; "it" hasn't gone anywhere.
"I've still got 'it'," Odom said. "The last couple of years, I’ve either played for a championship, I’ve won a gold medal, I’ve won an individual award, so I mean 'it’s' still there."
But "it" hasn't arrived in Dallas just yet.